Saturday, 5 November 2016

I am going to do something I don't want

to do today. I am going to get up and talk to a group. 
I have never been keen on "public speaking". I am fine with teaching something. If I know how to do something then I am, usually, reasonably confident I can explain it to other people. I am reasonably confident I can use words they will understand.
Getting up and just talking to people is another matter - and this will be even worse than usual.
I have been bullied into it - it is one of those "damned if you do and damned if you don't" situations. If I don't do it I will be labelled "uncooperative" and a good many more things. I'm not. I normally like cooperating with people. The world would be a better place if more people did cooperate.
But, in doing it, I am laying myself wide open to questions I can't answer, demands to do things I can't do and criticism because I can't wave a magic wand. The reality is that the rest of those involved have to make the effort now. 
If adults want to learn something then they must take the trouble to seek out information. If they are not sufficiently motivated to do that then they are not motivated enough to learn. Just handing out information is not going to solve the problem. And you know that old saying "practice makes perfect"? Well there is something in that too. Even if you are told something it may take some practice to acquire the skill.
There was a woman who came along to  the stand at the craft fair and asked if I could help her. She was wandering around eating her lunch at the time and said, "I'll come back." 
I thought "perhaps" but she did come back. She came back about ten minutes later and said with a cheerful and rather cheeky smile, " Please miss, I've eaten my lunch and I've washed my hands. Will you show me now?"
We both laughed and I asked her to knit a row of the "knit a row and go scarf" that was on the table. I observed her problem and then said, "It would help a lot if you didn't take your hand off the needle every time you make a stitch."
I showed her. She watched carefully. She tried another row and then another in the way I suggested. It was obviously difficult for her. But then she said,
       "Thanks. I understand what you mean. I'll need to put some practice in."
Her attitude told me she would too. She had been prepared to come back and find the information. She was prepared to try and she was, it would seem, prepared to keep on trying. 
I know there will be people I talk to today who are looking for the easy way out. They will be thinking, "All Cat needs to do is tell us. After that it will be easy. There's just something she isn't telling us."
If I tell them they need to seek out the resources, seek out the information, persist, take time, be bothered and more they aren't going to listen. It's not what they want to hear.
My only hope is that my friend R... will be well enough to be there. She can play the piano - and she knows about scales. The need to practice will be obvious to her.   


Anonymous said...

Sometimes people find the "Continental" style easier then the "English".

I hope you have enjoyed the day and not become too tired.


catdownunder said...

this is true - but the same principle applies!